The Tsitsikamma section of the Garden Route National Park is a treasure-trove of marine and inter-tidal life. When you go snorkelling or diving at Storms River, expect memorable encounters with anything from sea urchins, sponges and anemones to sharks and endemic fish that occur nowhere else in the world.

Did you know?

The Tsitsikamma section of the Garden Route National Park hosts the world-famous Otter Trail.

Storms River is one of the best snorkelling and diving spots in a country that is home to many beautiful and species-rich marine locations.

At Storms River, situated on the Garden Route, you'll not only discover ancient forests, mountain and coastal fynbos, hundreds of birds, interesting small mammals and spectacular scenery, but also a fascinating 80km coastline bordering the Atlantic Ocean.

The Tsitsikamma section of the Garden Route National Park is the perfect place to stay for your snorkelling or diving expeditions. Because this is a protected marine area, free from all commercial exploitation, the river, sea and reefs teem with marine life.

One of the major bonuses of snorkelling or diving at Storms River is that you can choose between salt or fresh water – or try both.

The Storms River mouth, with its dramatic scenery, but more importantly for the would-be diver, its bay, ringed by rocky reefs, is perfect for a river or shore dive. Sharks such as Raggedtooth and small hound sharks are almost always on the diving menu so have your underwater camera ready.

Because the reefs are brightly lit you could spot up to 50 different species of fish including blacktail, zebra, red roman and musselcracker. Many fish are endemic to this area and can be found nowhere else in the world. Also on show are vibrantly coloured sponges, anemones, sea urchins and ascidians.

Not a diver but would also like to discover this rich underwater world? Then go snorkelling. It's affordable, easy to do (kids love it) and just drifting along watching the underwater world pass by beneath the surface will keep you entranced for hours.

Travel tips & Planning info

Who to contact

South African National Parks
Tel: +27 (0)12 428 9111
Email: reservations@sanparks.org
Tsitsikamma National Park Snorkelling Route
Tel: +27 (0)42 281 1607

How to get here

Take the N2 west from Cape Town or George, or east from Port Elizabeth, and follow the directions to Storms River. The closest airports at in George and Port Elizabeth.

Best time to visit

Summer months are the best for diving and snorkelling.

Around the area

You are in the heart of the Garden Route so take time to explore the surrounding areas such as the Tsitsikamma forest, Plettenberg Bay, Mossel Bay, Knysna, Sedgefield, the Wilderness and George.

What to pack

All snorkelling and diving equipment can be rented at Storms River from a variety of tour operators and dive shops.

Where to stay

Tsitsikamma has various accommodation options, ranging from camping and caravan sites to cabins, chalets and guesthouses.